— Published 20 November 2023

Leonz Eder keeps the keys

No suspense at the International University Sports Federation (FISU). Meeting in Geneva for its 38th General Assembly, the body had to choose a President and an Executive Committee. Leonz Eder (pictured above) was the only candidate in the running for the top job, and was unanimously elected by representatives of the 115 national federations for a four-year term, until 2027. The Swiss executive had already been acting FISU president since the departure in 2020 of Oleg Matytsin, who was appointed Sports Minister in the Russian government. The new executive committee marks a shift towards parity, with three women for the four vice-president positions: Penninah Kabenge from Uganda, Verena Burk from Germany and Marian Dymalski from Poland. But the first vice-president remains a man: Brazil’s Luciano Atayde da Costa Cabral. The FISU General Meeting in Geneva also welcomed Qatar as a new member. Above all, it was marked by the announcement of the forthcoming departure of Belgian Eric Saintrond. Executive Director and General Secretary of the organization, he informed delegates that he would be retiring at the beginning of 2025. With his departure, a new page will be turned for FISU. Eric Saintrond began his career in international sport with FISU in 1985, after studying at the Institute of Motor Sciences of the Université Libre de Bruxelles. At the time, the organization had just three employees. Its headquarters were located in the Belgian capital.